Diveheart provides scuba diving opportunities for children, adults and veterans with disabilities

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Diveheart News

Diveheart provides thrills for disabled

  • Published on Tuesday, 19 August 2014 03:13

Diveheart — founded in 2001 by Chicago media executive Jim Elliott to train people with all sorts of disabilities to become scuba divers — has expanded its operation to South Florida in the past several years. Wilhelmina “Willie” Stanton, 31, of Lantana — a divemaster, boat captain and six-year Diveheart volunteer — is now the Florida team lead.

Stanton, with help from about 40 regular volunteers, holds “Discover Scuba” events and organizes classes for able-bodied scuba divers to become certified as buddies and instructors for the disabled under the Handicapped Scuba Association. Diveheart is working toward becoming its own certification agency for adaptive diving.


Read the complete news article on the Miami Herald website or download a PDF copy here

Raising Awareness for Adapted Scuba: A Case Report

  • Published on Thursday, 19 June 2014 11:23

A case study was done by Mark Cole and Rachel Smith, at Western Illinois University, to demonstrate how implementing an adapted scuba program can contribute to just, usable, sustainable,and transformational disability awareness programming in communities.

This study was done with Diveheart participation in determining project feasibility, holding a press conference along with Jim Elliott that included discussing the beneits of scuba in general followed by a joint presentation by him and an alumnus diver with a physical disability and doing a water-based demonstration that was auditory and visual in nature.

The outcomes from implementing adapted scuba events indicate that adapted scuba programming is a just, usable, sustainable, and transformational experience for all involved. The explanation of scuba as both a recreational and an employment opportunity for divers with and without disabilities exempliies the justice of this event. Participants at the event demonstrated behaviors that give evidence to the ability of adapted scuba to bring about lasting awareness and change. These behaviors included personal donations to Diveheart, internship placements, and requests for future programming. Students with disabilities noted a more realistic interaction with peers without disabilities. The introduction of a recreational sport that could and is enjoyed by many individuals regardless of their physical abilities allowed the students to be viewed equally, as peers with a common sport interest rather than people with physical diferences.


Download a copy of this very interesting case study here

Diveheart Thankful For Its ARMY Of Volunteers

  • Published on Wednesday, 28 May 2014 02:30


Saluting Chicagoland volunteers was the call of the Day February 23rd, when Diveheart hosted its annual Chicagoland volunteer appreciation event in Darien Illinois at Q Bar & Grill. Awards, great food and fun were on the agenda. Diveheart's 2014 plans are to host similar events around the country for it's teams of volunteers who work so hard to help children, adults and veterans with disabilities through Diveheart and it's scuba related programs.

Autism/Scuba Therapy Research Unveiled At International Adaptive Scuba Symposium

  • Published on Wednesday, 28 May 2014 02:20

Researchers, scuba instructors, therapists and individuals with disabilities gathered Friday February 14th during an International Adaptive Scuba Symposium hosted by the Midwest's Largest consumer dive show Our World Underwater and Diveheart. Autism & scuba therapy research conducted by Midwestern University was featured during the symposium. "The results were amazing" said Diveheart founder and president Jim Elliott. "I've worked with many of the young people with autism who were included in the study and even I, didn't realize the incredible benefits that scuba therapy brings to the individual and the family". For more information on the Autism study people can contact Diveheart at  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Here is more information on other cognitive impairments and scuba therapy


  • Published on Wednesday, 28 May 2014 02:00

The recent generosity of the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach California translated into a donation of thousands of dollars worth of fake coral to Diveheart for its future facility to be built in the Chicagoland area. The fake coral will be used by Diveheart in the facility which will focus on helping children, adults and veterans with disabilities become more acclimated to the underwater environment while going through scuba therapy and rehabilitation. It's a Diveheart vision to take the unrealized human potential that exists in the population of those with disabilities and create a paradigm shift in their lives using scuba therapy. Diveheart then wants to help them become good stewards of our underwater environments around the world. This is a first step in that process. More about the vision is in this recent TED TALK

More Articles...

  1. DiveHeart: Following Your Passion
  2. Diveheart introduces scuba diving to help physically and mentally challenged
  3. They’re buoyed by going under water
  4. Jim Elliott - Humanitarian of the Year
  5. Diveheart President Featured in Glancer Magazine
  6. Another memorable Diveheart experience
  7. New Childrens Book " ScubAbility" Shares The Story Of Hope
  8. A PEEK INTO THE FUTURE: The Diveheart Vision & Mission
  9. Diveheart Recognized As international Resource For Scuba Therapy
  10. Diveheart Featured At TEDx Naperville Event
  11. Diveheart Sets New Record With At Luau Fundraiser
  12. Diveheart Reinvents Adaptive Scuba At DEMA
  13. Diveheart Scuba Experience Programs Flourish
  14. Rotarians Support Diveheart
  15. Young Diveheart Support Holds Fundraiser
  16. Diveheart helps mobility-impaired group scuba-dive at A.D. Barnes Park pool
  17. Imagine the Possibilities with Diveheart
  18. 8th Annual Golf Outing A Great Day On The Links
  19. With A Little Help From Our Friends!
  20. Beware Dive Gear Donation Fraud !
  21. Diveheart Featured In Hometown Publication
  22. A Great Day For A Picnic
  23. Diveheart Charity Of Choice For Q-Bar Golf Outing
  24. New DSE Program With Center For Independence
  25. Diveheart In August Issue Of O, The Oprah Magazine
  26. Society Of Lady Divers Holds Fundraiser
  27. Local Retirement Community Vetrans Group Honors Diveheart's Mission
  28. Summer 2013: Diveheart's Life Changing Trips
  29. Diveheart At Local Chicagoland Events
  30. Boston Medical Presentation and DSE
  31. Diveheart Veteran Reunited with Christ of the Abyss Statue
  32. Marine Veteran in Southern California stands for first time since his injury
  33. Community Bands Together for Diveheart
  34. Ms. Wheelchair Texas to Honor Downers Grove-Based Diveheart
  35. Individuals with Disabilities Scuba Dive with Whale Sharks at Georgia Aquarium
  36. Young Atlanta Diver Makes Dreams Come True For Those With Disabilities
  37. Able, ready: Aquarium festival spotlights can-do resolve
  38. Diveheart makes dreams come true at the aquarium of the Pacific
  39. Diveheart Thanks Divebar For Their Support
  40. ICRE-R Kids Enjoy Their Training


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